Hap Shawl Center Square in Cat’s Paw Lace

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Hap Shawl Center Square in Cats Paw Lace Unvented by Wendy, Spinasjal on Ravelry These directions describe how to knit an easy lace center square for a traditional Scottish hap shawl. Directions do not include the edging, which traditionally is done in Old Shale or Old Shell lace. Refer to Sharon Millers classic text, Shetland Hap Shawls: Then & Now (Heirloom Knitting, 2006) or similar source, for directions on how to knit an entire shawl from the center square outward. The square starts at one point and increases to the size that you want, then decreases. Here is a photo of the start of the square:

The yarn used here is my handspun from Shetland Supreme combed top from Jamieson and Smith, purchased in Lerwick. If you are using handspun and are curious, my wpi on this double plied yarn is roughly 11. Gauge is not critical, at least for me; in the photographed piece the gauge is 4 stitches per inch on a size 4 circular needle. You could conceivably use any yarn that you like for this, although of course wool would be traditional, and a Jamieson and Smith product would suit (the 2 ply lace weight, not cobweb), or something soft like merino or blue faced Leicester would be nice. I dont think Id go any heavier than worsted weight unless you want a lovely chunky/bulky weight shawl, which you might. Follow written directions here, and/or see graph below: Knit each row. Wrong side: cast on two stitches and knit. Turn work, increase 1 stitch at each end, by whatever method you like (this is the right side). (Alternately, you can increase a stitch at the beginning of each row). You many find it helpful to mark the right side with a safety pin.

When you have 16 stitches on the needle, you will have finished row 15. Row 16. K1, inc 1, k4, place marker, k1, k2 tog, yo, k1, yo k2 tog, k 1, place marker, k3, inc 1, k1. Slip markers as you knit on all subsequent rows, adding markers between cats paw pattern repeats. Row 17. Knit. Row 18. K1, inc 1, k5, k2 tog, yo, k3, yo, k2 tog, k4, inc 1, k1. Row 19. Knit. Row 20. K1, inc 1, k8, k2 tog, yo, k8, inc 1, k1. Row 21 Knit. Continue knitting each row and increasing 1 stitch at the beginning of every even row, through row 31. Row 32. K1, inc 1, k5, place marker, *k2 tog, yo, k 1, yo, k2 tog, k1*, k7, repeat ** place marker, k4, inc 1, k1. Row 33. Knit. Row 34. K1, inc 1, k6, *k2 tog, yo, k3, yo, k2 tog*, k7, repeat **, k5, inc 1, k1. Row 35. Knit. Row 36. K1, inc 1, k9, k2 tog, yo, k12, k2 tog, yo, k2, inc 1, k1. Continue in this way, increasing the cats paw lace with 11 rows between each repeat, adding markers between lace repeats as you go. Knit to the width that you like, then start to decrease every other row rather than increase. Continue decreases until you have 2 stitches left. K 2 tog, and you are ready to pick up your Old Shale lace edging.